Arlington Cemetary Visit: By the end of this lesson,students will:

  • visit Arlington Cemetery and will have taken a walking tour of the grounds.
  • come to appreciate the complexity of the relationships between Blacks and Whites, free and enslaved people, and the Government and to some extent, as well as the rolesl played by Robert E. Lee and his son, as well as Todd Lincoln. 
  • appreciate the architectural  placement of Todd Lincoln's Tomb
  • discuss the meaning behind the Confederate Memorial
  • look at the overall meaning of the Cemetery.


DC Content Power Standards :
1.6, 1.7, 1.9 Influences on American Revolution, Formation of Constitution, Effects of Civil War and Reconstruction
DC Content Supporting Standards:
DCPS 11.1.9: Explain the effects of the Civil War and Reconstruction and of the Industrial Revolution, including demographic shifts and the emergence in the late 19th century of the United States as a world power. (G, P, E)
DC Historical and Social Studies Skills Standards:
HCI.1, HCI.3, HCI.7 Compare Past to Present, Connecting Events and Trends, Meaning/Impact of Historical Events
Common Core Reading for Literacy in Social Studies Standards:
RH.11-12.1, 2 , 4, 10: Cite textual evidence, summarize, vocab, read complex texts
Common Core Writing for Literacy in Social Studies Standards:
WHST.11-12.8a, 8c, 5a Use print and digital sources, Determine value of a source, Brainstorming, Outlining


To be determined by Dr. Smith and Arlington Cemetery staff.

Warm Up

Students will meet at Arlington Cemetery at 1PM on a Sunday afternoon. The guide will ask a number of questions to prepare them for what they are going to be seeing.

New Material

To be based on Dr. Smith's advice



There will only be an informal assessment on the day of the trip in the form of a 20 minute group discussion because this a an optional field trip.

Note: This trip is optional because over the course of the past ten years, I have come to realize that parents will allow their children to cut short their obligations to Church once. Any more than that and there is a serious issue for everyone.

While last year I did stay in Georgetown for the weekend and met my students at Tudor Place on a Saturday, I have been told that Sunday afternoon works better for the majority of my upcoming Juniors.

As I am not available on Saturdays (religious reasons), I can only ask what I can for my students what I can for myself.

Closure and Reflection

We will go around the circle to discuss interesting perspectives on what they have learned. Student volunteers will take the role of Moderator and Scribe.